Hey Now, Girl

Hey now, girl
Don’t clench your fists when you walk down the street
Please, just don’t
Don’t look down and hide your pretty face
Smile at a stranger with your arms open wide

Hey now, girl
Don’t be naïve
Not everyone sees your sweet, innocent intentions
Or notices your inquisitive eyes in the most, appropriate meaningful way
Be curiously cautious
You were not taught to cower
You were not taught to slouch your shoulders in shame
You learned all that
And unlearned it
You were taught to soar
To twirl in place
Dizzily kicking your feet all giggly as you fell to the floor

Hey now, girl
How are those rain puddles?
Do they annoy the shit out of you or make you smile mischievous?
Do you jump smack dab in the middle your feet soaking wet
Chuckling through the gap in your teeth and sopping rain gear

Hey, now girl
You don’t get a rewind button, forge ahead
Do you hastily walk around the puddle nuisance bumping head on into pedestrians?

Hey now, girl
Silly girl, let your glorious long locks fly into the wind
Do not tie them back into an uptight, neat bun
No, no do not, do not do that

Hey now, girl
Precious one
Why are you wiping the tears from your flushed cheeks
Let them fall freely
The beautiful, stunning cascades of vulnerability
Wear your emotions on your tight, muscular biceps
Let it bleed
Your heart for humanity now and again

Hey now, girl
Let the rivers guide you upstream
Do not take the easiest path, the downstream one, or listen to loose propaganda
Pay no mind
To the bullies at school, the mean girls who dubbed you little freak

Hey now, girl
Don’t you fret or remember their vitriol with spite or regret
You were the individual way back when
Shrug it off with a glass of Chardonnay and a wink
Hey now, funky girl with the wide-eyed rims, purple highlights and beat up Nikes
You shone metallic with silver wings on the soles of your feet
And disco balls above your head

Hey now, girl
Shrug your shoulders at the ignorant boys to men who made you cry
They did not understand your superhero powers

Hey now, girl
You grew solid, strong and mighty
With golden specks of fire coursing through your veins
You wouldn’t wait for any man to mend a broken heart
Nah, you’d smile and swim upstream because the currents felt good and fresh
Inviting and cold

Hey now, girl
It took a whole lot of time and patience to get here
Free from the blame, shame, fear, and guilt game
Society plays tricks on naïve, youngins’
Creating creepy, crafty adults

Hey now, girl
Eat vanilla ice cream dripping with hot fudge; mountains of whip cream and three cherries on top
Dance and wave your arms up and out without a care
Sing out of tune; belt the words like it’s your last five seconds of breath
Laugh without bringing your hands up to cover your mouth
Laugh loud, proud and often
Cry rivers and rivers of tears
Tidal waves of love, hope, faith, and devotion

Hey now, girl
You are going to be A- OKAY
You are going to be just fine and dandy
On your own
Don’t wait for tomorrow to watch the sunrise over the equator
To feel the muscles in your legs strong and tight as you hike
Miracle mountains of trouble and strife

Hey now, girl
‘Cuss like a boy
Go ahead, say FUCK YOU whenever appropriate and as often as you like

Hey now, girl
Hush now
Don’t waste your foul mouth resentment, bitter aftertaste or hate on the haters, fear mongrels, or naysayers
The ones who don’t see you
I do
You do too
Ladies can’t help but feel in sync

Hey now, girl
I see the strut and double time tap in your foot

Hey now, girl
I’ve seen through the walls that people tried to build around you
You kicked them down, brick by brick

Hey now, girl
You are your mothers and mothers and mothers’ daughter
Strong, confident and able
Unclench those fists and do the work
There is tilling to be done
Freedom, faith, hope and resolution to be reborn
Under the seedlings of the majestic oak
And the concrete towers and city streets
Ghetto fabulous, you are adaptable and oh so lovely
You lead with human kindness, empathy, and understanding
I get excited all over again
At the possibility

Hey now, girl
You’re all grown up
Into the most glorious, statuesque, creation
You are woman, now
Go on
And get it
You, role model
Show us proud
To shout, ‘hey now, girl’
Into the future

Hey now, girl
You can be anything you want, anything at all
You are the prettiest child, the blank slate young face

Hey now, girls
You are the next generation, the future dreamers, puddle jumpers and doers
The dancers
Of beautiful determination
We stand proud

Photo Credit: МАRI Flickr via Compfight cc

Jacqueline Cioffa

A retired, international model, and celebrity makeup artist. Co-Author of Model Citi Zen, the guide. Founder of http://modelcitizenmakeup.blogspot.com/. Author of numerous prose pieces in various literary magazines. Most recently published in Little Episodes Brainstorms the anthology, among esteemed artists Sadie Frost, Melvin Burgess and Todd Swift.


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